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Flash Fiction 2017 - Progpaganda

Randall Library's Annual Flash Fiction Contest Begins Now!

Our annual Flash Fiction Contest is a hallmark of applied learning at UNCW and the entire student body is invited to participate. Flash Fiction is a story-writing competition where contestants have one week to write 500 words (or less) on a given theme. One other important detail: your story must incorporate Randall Library. (Detailed rules and regulations below)

Once all the entries are judged, three top winners are chosen along with a number of honorable mentions and those stories are illustrated by UNCW graphic design students and published by the UNCW Publishing Laboratory. The top three winners are also awarded cash prizes, First prize - $200.00; Second prize - $150.00; Third prize - $100.00 (applied to their student accounts). 

On Thursday, April 13th, students will host a party/reading/reception to celebrate the Flash Fiction 2017 Collection.


This year’s Theme: PROPAGANDA

2017 marks the 500th anniversary of The Protestant Reformation, and what better time to celebrate information literacy and to remember one of history’s first major media revolutions?

As it became possible for reliable information to spread widely and equitably, inevitably people began distributing information in a misleading way. Propaganda is a powerful tool of persuasion that can infiltrate our lives on political, cultural, and personal levels.

From “fake news” to political advertisements, none of us are immune to propaganda in our daily lives. One of the missions of academic libraries is to empower users to discern good information from bad. Through information literacy instruction, one-on-one research assistance, and by providing access to quality research databases, libraries are a trusted defense against disinformation.

How will you incorporate propaganda into your Flash Fiction entry?


Flash Fiction Contest Rules
If any of these rules are not followed your story will be automatically disqualified.

  • Must be a UNCW student, currently enrolled.
  • 500 words or less.
  • Must include theme (PROPAGANDA). Must mention Randall Library
  • Double spaced.
  • 12 pt., Times New Roman.
  • 1 inch margins on all sides.
  • Use one tab to indicate every paragraph indent.
  • Stories due by Wednesday, February 8th at 5 pm.
  • Four (4) hard copies delivered to the Randall Library Circulation Desk.  
  • Note:  The circulation desk is ONLY a drop- off point.  No information about the contest will be available from Circulation Staff.
  • Each copy MUST have a cover sheet with name, phone, and 850 number. DO NOT include name on actual story.
  • One story per student


If your Story is selected, the following regulations must be adhered to:

  • An emailed .doc version of your story. DO NOT save as .docx.
  • Section breaks should be notated by (***).
  • Turn off all auto-formatting features (such as automatic paragraph indenting, outlining, bullet points).
  • Enter only one space after terminal punctuation. If you used two spaces, search/replace to update your file.
  • For dashes, use em-dash character (shift, option, hyphen), with no space on either side, or use two hyphens, and we’ll search and replace the em dash during typesetting.
  • For any special characters or glyphs, such as trademark symbols, accents, or irregular punctuation, please note them by highlighting them in yellow with MS Word's "text highlight color" feature. 
  • If you'd like to include a special character or a glyph but you don't know how to set it, please submit a hardcopy of your story with specific instructions for the placement and type of special character to be inserted.
  • Files should be saved as follows: lastname_firstname.doc.

      NOTE: Edits and revisions will NOT be allowed after submissions, nor will the publisher have time to check your work. Take care that your piece is fully edited and perfected before submitting.

      NOTE: If your story is selected for publication, you will be required to sign the following release: Release for Use of Student Work